By David Crane
defrev (at) gmail (dot) com
May 4, 2011
Last updated on 5/09/11.
The mainstream media (MSM) news outlets, including CBS News, are reporting that President Obama is refusing to release the photos and/or video of a dead Usama Bin Laden (UBL) to the American people. In DefenseReview’s opinion, this is a major mistake, with all due respect. We, the American people have lost too many of our loved ones and spent too much treasure, both in the 9/11 attack and in the subsequent Afghanistan and Iraq wars, to not be allowed to see a dead UBL with our own eyes. We deserve it. As human beings and as Americans, it’s important for us, psychologically, to be able to SEE proof, and put UBL behind us without a shadow of a doubt. It’s also important in terms of providing the American people with the simple satisfaction of seeing someone who’s been sold to us as an incredibly-dangerous radical Islamic bogeyman dead on the slab. Would the President deny us that simple pleasure? UBL and his minions certainly got to watch video of our people dying, both at Ground Zero and on the battlefield.
It’s not about “spiking the ball“, as President Obama has phrased and framed it. It’s about showing the American people and the rest of the world, including our enemies, that UBL is really, truly dead, and that the United States did what it’s says it did. It’s about honoring and respecting the American people more than “Muslim sensitivities”. It’s about caring about doing what’s right and fair more than fearing potential reprisals from our enemies, whom DR would imagine are already fairly upset by the U.S. military killing UBL. Unless the U.S. Government can shut down Al Jazeera and all the more radical Arabic/Muslim media outlets, there’s no way to keep “Muslim sensitivities” from being offended and our enemies from being inflamed by our actions. This is war, remember? Besides, our enemies feed off of any weakness we project, and not showing the photos because we’re afraid of whatever might happen as a result shows weakness. The Arab and Muslim worlds, in general, only respect strength. So we, the U.S., must project strength at all times.
By the way, showing pictures of other dead individuals in UBL’s compound, and not UBL himself, will only add fuel to the conspiracy fires and natural doubts many people have out there.
Defense Review doesn’t doubt (at present) that U.S. Naval Special Warfare Development Group (NSWDG)/DEVGRU/Seal Team Six (ST6) assaulters/operators killed Osama Bin Laden (OBL), just like it’s been reported by the MSM. The DEVGRU assaulters are great warriors and American heroes. We’d just like to see the pictures (and video), and we know we’re not alone in that desire.
The American people are more than strong enough to handle viewing any/all photos and/or video of a dead Usama Bin Laden, no matter how gory/graphic they are. Just think of the movies and television shows we watch all the time. Is the U.S. Government not aware of movies like Wrong Turn 2 and TV shows like CSI Miami? The American people have been conditioned to watching graphic violence for many years, since we were children. Frankly, I’d be surprised if a lot of people didn’t turn the photo(s) into their computer or smartphone wallpaper.
Plus, it’s not the Government’s place to censor the truth for the purpose of protecting the delicate psyches (sarcasm) of its citizens. We’re not fragile, helpless little children, so don’t treat us as such. However, if President Obama is still concerned about the American people’s ability to psychologically handle the visual images (still photos and/or video footage), just mark any/all hypertext links to them “Warning: Graphic”, or something to that effect, just like the Drudge Report is currently doing with the “graphic” photos of the other dead individuals at the UBL compound, so people can prepare themselves mentally, think about it beforehand, or choose not to view them, altogether, if they don’t think they can take it. Remember, no one is forcing anyone to view the photos, but we, the American people, should have the ability to view them, if we so choose.
There’s a reason the FBI/law enforcement showed the American people photos and film footage of dead criminals like Bonnie and Clyde and John Dillinger, back in the day. There was also a reason the Bush (43) administration/Pentagon showed photos and video of the deceased Uday and Qusay Hussein in July 2003, and the subsequent video footage of a captured Saddam Hussein. The Iraqi people needed to see them dead and captured, respectively, with their own eyes. Seeing is believing, particularly in that part of the world. Part of it is also to document these events/deaths for history, for posterity.
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(Updated) Breaking News: We Got Him! Usama Bin Laden (UBL) Shot DEAD via Double-Tap to the Head in Firefight with U.S. Strike Team (U.S. Navy DEVGRU Spec-Operators) During Direct Action (DA) Mission on “Huge Compound” Deep inside Pakistan. Confirmed.